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Looking to gain more control over nugget, meatball and burger patty preparation? Solutions available from JBT alco offer the ability to deliver uniform products using optimized processes, writes Volker Paland, Sales Director at JBT alco.

When it comes to producing uniform, tasty nuggets, meatballs, burger patties or even plant-based products, having the right equipment and process is essential. During the first stage of preparing and standardizing product mass, it is crucial to coordinate product-specific settings, internally developed recipes and proven process technology. 

After all, the goal is clear: Your products should not leave anything to be desired in terms of aroma, appearance and taste. With a full-line nugget preparation system, burger patty line, and meatball production line, JBT alco offers a range of options to suit different needs.

One such solution is the alco Mixer AMP. A double-shaft paddle mixer designed to gently and efficiently blend meat or plant-based alternatives without overworking them, the AMP delivers uniform product that maintains its shape and texture throughout the production process. 

Additionally, CO2 or N2 can be added to the mixer to control the temperature of the product for further processing, such as forming and coating. With a range of different parameter settings, the AMP can be adjusted to improve overall process quality and optimize energy consumption.

Getting products into shape

When it comes to chicken or vegan nuggets, another useful solution is available from alco. The alco Grinder AMG is used for even, gentle and efficient mincing raw protein products before they are mixed and seasoned in the double-shaft paddle mixer. This system ensures the meat has the required structure and temperature for the forming process that follows. 

The alco Forming Machine AFM will then shape the meat or vegan raw material into uniform nuggets in 2D, 2.5D or 3D shapes. This process benefits greatly from meat that has been properly prepared in the meat preparation line, as it ensures that the meat is of the highest quality and consistency.

Consistent results

Uniform results: the alco Mixer AMP

A meatball production line also benefits from the use of the AMP double-shaft paddle mixer. Once the raw protein has been mixed uniformly to the required recipe, cooling is carried out with the aid of cryogenic gases, which are injected into the mixing vessel either via CO2 injection fittings in the hood or via N2 injection from below.

After being processed by the Forming Machine AFM, the result is uniform, perfectly shaped meatballs, ready for further coating, cooking or freezing without any extra detours.

Adaptable: the alco Grinder AMG

For poultry burgers, the meat is first analyzed by a scanner, which measures and adjusts the fat content to the desired level, before it is loaded into the Grinder AMG. A twin-screw system and cutting sets with optional separation mechanisms are adaptable to individual requirements and can handle different types of raw materials, as well as frozen blocks down to a temperature of -18 °C.

The meat is then transported to the double-shaft paddle mixer, where it is mixed and seasoned efficiently and quickly. Optional vacuum equipment allows optimized protein digestion or reduced gas entrapment and avoidance of cryogenic gas leakage in subsequent cooking processes. Once the meat is prepared, it can be formed into burger patties, packed, and frozen for dispatch.

To ensure consistency and reliability across all of these production lines, a central recipe management system is available. This system allows for the creation, editing, and storage of recipes centrally, with the ability to adjust recipes from batch to batch if needed. The system also provides integrated traceability and batch reporting, as well as an overview of individual machine status and operation of the full line.

In conclusion, JBT alco’s specialized solutions for nuggets, meatballs, and burgers can greatly improve the quality and consistency of these products. Alco double-shaft paddle mixers and grinders play a key role in these systems, ensuring that the meat is mixed uniformly and efficiently. With the added benefits of central recipe management and an outstanding range of different equipment options, producers can achieve greater control over their production processes and deliver high-quality products consistently.